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Singer Sherry Kennedy to share her Little Secret

Sherry Kennedy, who is originally from Fort Macleod, has released her new CD Little Secret.

Sherry Kennedy, who is originally from Fort Macleod, has released her new CD Little Secret.

Sherry Kennedy has a little secret she wants to share.
The former Fort Macleod resident has just released her latest CD, the aptly-titled Little Secret.
“I’m more well-known in Europe than I am in my own area, so I guess I’m the little secret,” Kennedy said with a laugh. “And we all have our own little secret.”
Little Secret contains 12 songs that are a mix of tunes Kennedy wrote as well as some long-time favourites.
Kennedy recorded Little Secret in Nashville with producer Mark Moseley and eight professional studio musicians.
“I love the CD,” said Kennedy, who makes her living as a singer, artist and voice teacher. “I think it’s some of the best work I’ve done.”
A resident of Calgary, Kennedy has toured extensively in Canada, the U.S. and Europe during her career.
Kennedy’s previous albums include Don’t Wait, Ordinary Woman, Reflections of Christmas and Shades of Jazz and Blues.
Kennedy, whose first music teacher was Daisy Young of Fort Macleod, is comfortable in a range of genres, from gospel to blues, rock to jazz and country to musical theatre.
Little Secret had its genesis four years ago when Kennedy began writing songs for a new album. That work was supplemented by a demo Kennedy produced with some talented Calgary musicians.
The project really took off when her publicist put her in touch with the Nashville-based Moseley, who asked for a copy of the demo.
“I sort of didn’t think he would call me,” Kennedy said. “But he called me back and we started talking.”
Kennedy and Moseley worked together for three months in preparation for recording the songs.
“We decided we were going to pick five of my songs, and then we would pick some of my favourite cover songs.”
Kennedy’s songs on the CD are the title track Little Secret, Think of Me, Don’t Touch Me Please, Do You Love Him and The Legend of Rainbow Powers.
“I think the songs I’ve written are more rootsy country, or blues,” Kennedy said. “That’s kind of my roots as well.”
The Legend of Rainbow Powers is tied to Kennedy’s youth in Fort Macleod. Rainbow Powers was a woman from Granum who was well-known in Fort Macleod for her colourful appearance and the candy she would hand out to children.
“The music and everything just came to me,” said Kennedy, who included in the song references to the Rex Cafe and Queen’s Hotel. “I had to write that song . . . I love the song. It was so much fun to write.”
Kennedy admits she know little about the real Rainbow Powers and used creative licence when writing the song.
One of the songs Kennedy covers on Little Secret is the Nina Simone song Sugar In My Bowl, which also has ties to Kennedy’s early years in her home town. The choice of the song is influenced by trips Kennedy made with her family to dances at the South Macleod Hall.
“When I was a kid we would go out there and there would be these guys who played. It was a really raw kind of music. Sugar In My Bowl is that kind of song the reminds me of that old community hall music.”
Another cover song is Wild Night, a Van Morrison song Kennedy sang years ago with the popular Lethbridge band Boogaloo Walk Band.
“We pretty much ripped up the city,” Kennedy said of Boogaloo Walk Band. “It was lots of fun.”
Mama He Treats Your Daughter Mean, Here After, Sweet Inspiration, If Only and Sisters Are Doing It For Themselves are the other songs Kennedy chose.
“There is a big variety,” Kennedy said of the music on Little Secret.
Kennedy went to Nashville in August to record the CD. That’s where she met the studio musicians Mosley had chosen to play on Little Secret: Gordon Mote on grand piano, Brent Mason on electric guitar, Tommy Wells on drums and percussion, Duncan Mullins on bass guitar, Larry Beaird on acoustic guitar, Wanda Vick on fiddle and mandolin and Rodger Morris on keyboards.
“The musicians I worked with were out of this world,” Kennedy said. “They were so professional . . . these guys were the ultimate.”
Leanne Steinhauer, Melissa Duvall and Billy Davis provided background vocals for Little Secret.
The collaboration took 10 days in the studio in Nashville. Kennedy was thrilled with the creative process.
“The process was amazing,” Kennedy said.
Kennedy also took part in a photo shoot that took place in an abandoned car wash owned by a woman who turned the building into a studio for graffiti artists. The resulting photos are seen on the CD cover.
“Those guys are artists,” Kennedy said. “It’s graffiti, but they take it very serious.”
The release party for Little Secret is Feb. 7-8 in the Engineered Air Theatre at the Epcor Centre in Calgary. A portion of the money raised will go to Kennedy’s Healing Art of Music Foundation.
Little Secret is available on iTunes. For an autographed copy, call Sherry Kennedy at 403-271-0483.

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